Homophobic bullying is still happening throughout society, and in particular in our schools. None of us condone it, but very few of us actually do anything concrete to stop it, and in particular families of LGBT kids are often to quiet in challenging schools/colleges/universities when they are aware of what has happened to their child or to someone they know.
In our previous comment on the Ashers Bakery case, we noted that the Office of the First MInister along with the Deputy First Minister funds the Equality Commission, this means they are responsible for ensuring equality in our schools but why is it that our legislative bodies seem to be dragging their feet over ensuring that our children our safe from any kind of bullying in our schools?
Is political dogma getting in the why of natural rights? I will let you decide when you next speak to your MLA/MP and at the ballot box.
£2 Million Awards Announced From Homophobic Bullying Fund
Funds awarded to projects to train school staff and provide support for pupils affected by homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying.
◉ Minister for Women and Equalities Jo Swinson, said, “It’s good news that schools are making progress on homophobic bullying
Homophobic bullying in schools is decreasing: 55 per cent of lesbian, gay and bisexual young people surveyed for Stonewall’s 2012 School Report said they had experienced homophobic bullying, down from 65 per cent in 2009.
However further action is still needed. Metro’s Youth Chances Survey 2014 found that more than half of gay young people had experienced either discrimination or harassment. In a report from Stonewall last year 86 per cent of secondary school teachers and 45 per cent of primary school teachers said pupils at their school had experienced homophobic bullying. Most (89 per cent for secondary schools and 70 per cent for primary) had heard homophobic language used. Teachers say they lack the knowledge and confidence to tackle HBT bullying effectively. These projects will help to build that confidence by providing training and resources for school staff.
Minister for Women and Equalities, Jo Swinson, said, “It’s good news that schools are making progress on homophobic bullying, but it must be eradicated entirely. The trauma of being bullied at school can stay with you for life, and it is absolutely unacceptable that those who may be gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender are being targeted. Teachers need specialist support and training to help them stamp out homophobic bullying, which is why we have funded these excellent projects which are designed to tackle this issue head on.”
The organisations awarded funding are:
Anne Frank Trust (£104,894) – to run workshops and educate young people about prejudice and the impact of the Holocaust on lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
Barnardo’s (£263,218) – to provide face-to-face support for victims of HBT bullying and training for staff with a focus on cultural issues in schools in Leeds and Wakefield.
Diversity Role Models with Brook (£277,722) – to develop and deliver training on tackling HBT bullying to 10,000 teachers and staff in 400 schools.
EACH (£189,304) – to deliver a training and resource programme in schools across Avon and Somerset.
Educate and Celebrate (£214,048) – to train staff in 60 schools, giving them confidence and strategies to address HBT language and bullying and promote inclusiveness throughout the school environment and the curriculum.
National Children’s Bureau (£128,754)– to train 1,500 teachers on tackling homophobia, biphobia and transphobia through PSHE.
Show Racism the Red Card (£119,557)– to hold workshops with 2,000 young people at football clubs around England, train 200 teachers and run a film competition for young people on tackling HBT bullying.
Stonewall (£465,594) – to extend and share its ‘train the trainer’ course with 60 partner organisations, enabling them to run the programme with schools in their local communities and giving them the skills to tackle HBT bullying.
ALSO READ:1 in ten calls to Samartians are worried about their sexualityMarcel Varney, Assistant Director for Barnardo’s, said, “At Barnardo’s, we hear about HBT bullying from the young people we work with across the organisation. We know that the bullying of a young person because of their sexuality can be incredibly damaging and can impact dramatically on a young person’s ability to succeed at school.
“This commitment from the government will enable us to reach hundreds of young people to alert them to the impact of HBT bullying. It‘s a big step towards stamping out HBT bullying. We aim to improve the visibility of LGBT lives in the school environment and ensure that young people are supported regardless of culture or religion.”